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Mezzanine financing is a method that typically involves a greater degree of investment risk than the senior financing employed by financial institutions. Senior financing senior loans, etc. In Japan, most corporate bond issues and funds provided by financial institutions are senior financing. By comparison, mezzanine financing is lower in the repayment hierarchy, so risk is higher than for senior financing. In markets such as the United States, which have a broad range of investors, mezzanine financing plays an important role in diversifying the types of funding that are provided.
As mezzanine financing is riskier than senior financing, it bears a correspondingly higher interest premium, making it an economically rational choice of investment funds. Depending on financing needs and capital policies, various types of mezzanine financing can be introduced and set to have diverse characteristics corresponding to both equity and debt. Financial leverage can be increased for individual businesses, thereby reducing the required amount of equity. For sponsors, this increase in leverage corresponds to higher investment return and allows them to apply available funds to other projects.
The following points should be kept in mind when considering mezzanine financing as a method of financial restructuring. For buyouts sponsored by funds and other financial investors, a substantial need for mezzanine financing exists.
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This type of financing can be used to enhance capital without altering the structure of voting rights. Furthermore, mezzanine financing can be employed for purposes of financial restructuring, in accordance with operating strategies. Subordinated loans: Mezzanine debt typically has a lower priority than senior debts when borrowers go bankrupt. For example, if you lend money to a business that goes belly up, the business may need to sell assets like buildings and equipment to generate cash.
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Banks and senior bondholders are usually near the front of the line, giving them a better chance of receiving payment in a liquidation. Plus, their interests may be secured by collateral. Mezzanine loans are typically farther back in line but above common equity. Higher rates: Because of their low priority, mezzanine loans come with higher costs.
Interest rates in the double-digits are common, or lenders may demand equity exposure to supplement interest income. Existing business: Mezzanine lenders usually work with companies that have a successful track record. That said, experienced entrepreneurs might be able to find financing, including funds to purchase real estate. Flexible payment: Depending on the terms of an agreement, borrowers may have several options for repayment.
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More usually the following conditions prevail: A sum of money changes hands. Most of it is lent to the borrower at an interest rate but a portion of it is in the form of a favorable sale of equity. In addition there may also be a warrant for the lender and restrictive covenants under which the lender is further protected. The loan will typically fetch an interest rate well above the prime rate and will be for a period of four to eight years.
In the ideal case, the mezzanine financier anticipates earning a high interest on the loan and rapid appreciation of the equity he or she has acquired or can acquire at a low price with the warrant. Mezzanine financing is typically used in acquisitions based on leveraged buyouts in which all of the investors, not least the mezzanine financier, anticipate cashing out by taking the business public again and refinancing it after the acquisition.
Thus the equity can be turned into cash with a substantial gain on the capital. In the event of a failure, the mezzanine lender has little recourse except to influence the company's turnaround by using its stock acquired by means of the warrant.
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The borrower turns to mezzanine lenders because he or she cannot acquire capital by other means for lack of collateral or because its finances cannot attract less expensive lending. The price of the money, of course, is high due to high rates of interest, but the owner is betting on being able to repay the loan without yielding too much control.
Hoogesterger, John. Paul CityBusiness. Retrieved on 4 April Retrieved on 18 April